2020 NFL Mock Draft: Early Minnesota Vikings’ three-round predictions

(Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images)
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Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images
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Cardinal . Paulson Adebo. 1. player. 871. . Cornerback

For the majority of the Mike Zimmer era, cornerback has been a major strength for the Vikings. Unfortunately, that hasn’t quite been the case in 2019. As a result, the Vikings could be tempted to go to the cornerback well again early during the 2020 NFL Draft.

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It’s unclear what happened, but Xavier Rhodes has taken a huge step backward. No longer is he playing like the shutdown cornerback the Vikings paid him to be back in 2017. Unless he suddenly turns it around between now and the end of the 2019 campaign, Minnesota could be looking to find reinforcements to make up for his sudden shortcomings.

On top of that, Trae Waynes and Mackensie Alexander are scheduled to be free agents in 2020, and they won’t return for cheap. Mike Hughes has been a mixed bag since his return from injury, and Holton Hill is draped in character concerns after missing the first eight games of the season due to suspension. Put simply, more options may soon be needed at cornerback.

So why not grab Paulson Adebo in the first round? While the Stanford stud cornerback hasn’t had the amazing 2019 season so many expected from him, the talent in coverage is still there. He’ll need some work before achieving stardom at the next level, but the potential is obvious.

Adebo has the size (6-1, 185 pounds) and length Zimmer loves in his cornerbacks, and has flashed shutdown upside at times. Once the Vikings can work on his technique, the former Cardinal could soon emerge as a legitimate starter.